The Solar System is in motion around the Milky Way galaxy, while the planets in the Solar System are in orbiting motion around the sun. As a result, from an observer outside the Solar System, planets will appear to move in a helical motion. Someone created an animation of this helical motion; it went viral and had a lot of media attention.
Flat-Earthers noticed the animation and use it to reinforce their arguments. They claim if the animation is correct, then stars should appear moving & star trails should be impossible. In reality, the animation does not show us the vast distances to the stars.
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The Sweden Solar System is the largest scale model of the Solar System in the world. We can use it to get a better sense of the sizes and distances in the Solar System.
Flat-Earthers like to claim that we never see a scale model of the Solar System, and use it to “prove” the failure of science to explain the world. The Sweden Solar System proves them wrong, and also gives us an idea about the problem of making a scale model of the Solar System.
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Unlike other planets that were found by empirical observation, Neptune was found by mathematical prediction involving Newton’s law of universal gravitation.
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Practically every illustration showing the Sun, Earth, and Moon is drawn not to scale. The reason is that the sizes of celestial bodies are far too small compared to the distances between them.
Flat-Earthers sometimes use this fact to point out the alleged “failure of modern science” to describe celestial bodies, or even “a mean to deceive us all.” However, the real reason is just that it is practically impossible to create a model of the solar system in the actual scale, using static images, that still effectively describes the objects it is trying to explain.
Continue reading “Not to Scale: Illustration of the Solar System”